John McCain and the Religious Right — Increasingly Comfortable and Not So Odd Bedfellows

For indispensable reporting on the coronavirus crisis and more, subscribe to Mother Jones' newsletters.


Before you can be Commander-in-Chief, you have to be Panderer-in-Chief. Or so thinks John McCain, anyway, who continues to discard his “moderate” and “maverick” labels in favor of listing very strategically to the right. A run-down:

Yesterday on ABC, McCain said that he supports the overturning of Roe v. Wade. A few years ago, McCain told the San Francisco Chronicle this:

I would not support repeal of Roe v. Wade, which would then force X number of women in America to [undergo] illegal and dangerous operations.

McCain yesterday on ABC:

I do believe that it’s very likely or possible that the Supreme Court should — could overturn Roe v. Wade, which would then return these decisions to the states, which I support… I don’t believe the Supreme Court should be legislating in the way that they did on Roe v. Wade.

Of course, this all recalls the McCain-Falwell saga, where McCain told reporters during his 2000 presidential run that Falwell, Robertson and their ilk were bad for the country, and that Falwell specifically was an “agent of intolerance.”* Early this year, McCain took back the “agent of intolerance” quote and gave the commencement address at Falwell’s Liberty University.

And two days ago, ThinkProgress blogged that McCain is hiring Falwell’s staffers. Specifically, the debate coach at Liberty University, who will advise McCain on communications issues. So we can look forward to McCain’s new position on fighting the war on terror: “Blow them all away in the name of the Lord.”

* That is a pretty easy case to make. Here’s Falwell on the causes of 9/11:

I really believe that the pagans, and the abortionists, and the feminists, and the gays and the lesbians who are actively trying to make that an alternative lifestyle, the ACLU, People For the American Way, all of them who have tried to secularize America. I point the finger in their face and say ‘you helped this happen.’

Thank you!

We didn't know what to expect when we told you we needed to raise $400,000 before our fiscal year closed on June 30, and we're thrilled to report that our incredible community of readers contributed some $415,000 to help us keep charging as hard as we can during this crazy year.

You just sent an incredible message: that quality journalism doesn't have to answer to advertisers, billionaires, or hedge funds; that newsrooms can eke out an existence thanks primarily to the generosity of its readers. That's so powerful. Especially during what's been called a "media extinction event" when those looking to make a profit from the news pull back, the Mother Jones community steps in.

The months and years ahead won't be easy. Far from it. But there's no one we'd rather face the big challenges with than you, our committed and passionate readers, and our team of fearless reporters who show up every day.

Thank you!

We didn't know what to expect when we told you we needed to raise $400,000 before our fiscal year closed on June 30, and we're thrilled to report that our incredible community of readers contributed some $415,000 to help us keep charging as hard as we can during this crazy year.

You just sent an incredible message: that quality journalism doesn't have to answer to advertisers, billionaires, or hedge funds; that newsrooms can eke out an existence thanks primarily to the generosity of its readers. That's so powerful. Especially during what's been called a "media extinction event" when those looking to make a profit from the news pull back, the Mother Jones community steps in.

The months and years ahead won't be easy. Far from it. But there's no one we'd rather face the big challenges with than you, our committed and passionate readers, and our team of fearless reporters who show up every day.

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our newsletters

Subscribe and we'll send Mother Jones straight to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate

We have a new comment system! We are now using Coral, from Vox Media, for comments on all new articles. We'd love your feedback.